White Rabbits Kindergarten and Pre-School: Second inspection finds children at risk
A nursery where children's welfare is placed at risk due to lack of recruitment checks and staff don't know who is in charge has been rated as 'inadequate' for the second time this year.
White Rabbits Kindergarten and Pre-School Nursery on Mellish Road, in the St Matthews area, was rated inadequate across the board in June after an Ofsted inspection and has been given the same rating again after inspectors declared 'further weaknesses' had become evident.
The nursery, which currently has 32 children on its roll, employs 11 members of staff but at the time of the latest inspection, the main manager was not present.
When inspectors asked staff who was in charge as a deputy, they could not get a straight answer, which prompted concerns about the safety of children.
Inspector Trisha Turney said: "There is a lack of clarity about the identity of a named deputy and, when questioned during the inspection, staff named different people, none of whom accepted that they held the role.
"As a result, there was nobody present with the appropriate knowledge, training and skills to ensure the safe and efficient running of the nursery. Recruitment procedures are not robust.
"For example, the required Disclosure and Barring Service checks are not carried out for all staff, placing children at further risk."
According to the inspection report, the near future for the nursery may not see improvements made, with the leader leaving but no plan in place for after this.
Issues over the quality of teaching were also raised.
Ms Turney said: "Not enough support has been given to staff to develop their teaching practice to an acceptable level.
"The provider does not demonstrate the capacity to improve.
"For example, the current manager has given notice and little consideration has been given to ensuring that effective leadership is established after this time.
"Staff are poor communicators and fail to engage children successfully.
"Although most staff are qualified, those working with toddlers and pre-school children have a poor knowledge of how to promote children's learning and development.
"Staff do not accurately assess children's learning to build on what they already know.
"The majority of children are not engaged or motivated to learn.
"They do not develop confidence or learn to participate in activities for long periods of time.
"Significant weaknesses in teaching mean that older children do not gain the key skills they need to be ready to start school."
A list of points where the nursery can improve has been handed over by Ofsted including offering training to teachers, obtaining relevant Disclosure and Barring Service checks for staff and sorting out clearly who is deputy leader.
The nursery was unavailable for comment.